Three AERO-equipped LMP3 United Autosports machines will take the grid for the 12-hour endurance classic in Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi, Dubai (14 December 2017) - After a season that saw AERO Sustainable Paint Technology teams score wins and championships around the globe, there is still yet one more podium target on the 2017 season as the focus moves to the United Emirates this weekend.
The Gulf 12 Hour race, staged at Yas Marina Circuit, will see AERO well-represented as championship squad United Autosports enters three JS P3 machines with a robust 10 driver line up to share the racing duties in the prestigious race.
The 3.45-mile, 21-corner F1-grade track just off of the Dubai coast will see five different GT and Prototype classes line up for the start of the Gulf 12 Hour event, with United Autosports campaigning two entries in the Pro/Am class and a third in the Am class.
A difference maker both visually and from a performance point of view, AERO Sustainable Paint Technology will represent a third of the LMP3 field.
Carrying the Gulf colors for the race will be the No. 23 Ligier JS P3 of Richard Meins, Shaun Lynn and Jim McGuire as the team’s sole Am-class entry. The three racers will be making their return to the Gulf 12 Hour after having scored podium finishes at the race last year. Not only does this trio have previous event experience under their belt, but they will also tap into lessons learned through the 2017 Michelin Le Mans Cup season onboard the Nissan-powered Ligier.
“I’m really looking forward to racing with Richard (Meins) again in Abu Dhabi, and to have Jim (McGuire) join us this time will be fantastic,” said Lynn. “We have got to know Jim over the course of the Michelin Le Mans Cup season and it made sense for us to join forces and enter the Am class of the Gulf 12 Hours together as we have had a laugh this year all over Europe. We had a good result at Yas Marina last year so fingers crossed we can have a good time again this year.”
A big result for United Autosports would be a fitting way to close out the year, for both the team and AERO Paint Technology. 2017 saw AERO score an encore IMSA WeatherTech championship with Scuderia Corsa to follow up its 2016 title, while the RLL Racing BMW M6 also brought more champagne with AERO following a multiple-victory season in 2017 in GTLM competition. As the second year that LMP3 have raced in the Gulf 12 Hour, it also marks the one year anniversary for McGuire with United Autosports.
“I began my United Autosports tenure a year ago at Abu Dhabi—and wow, what a year it has been!” said McGuire. “The team, The Flower and the crew at UAS really put out a superb car for us every week, and their professionalism has shown in the team’s ability to win the LMP3 championship for a second straight year in ELMS. Our AERO-painted Ligier JS P3s were quick and nimble, and I’m really happy that I got a chance to grow with the team this past season with a podium finish at Portimão. And now we get to bring it all back to the desert where I started with UAS! That AERO paint will look stunning under the bright Arabian Peninsula sun. I’m chomping at the bit to get my wheels back on the tarmac. I’m really excited about racing Yas Marina with the legends of Historic Motorsport – Richard “Macau” Meins and Shaun “Alex’s Dad” Lynn!”
The No. 23 machine will be accompanied by a second United Autosports AERO-equipped prototype competing for Pro/Am bragging rights with Guy Cosmo, Patrick Byrne, Mike Benham and Salih Yoluc alongside the team’s second Pro/Am entry of Johhny Molem, Bon Grimes and Tony Wells.
The team, which earned the ELMS LMP3 Championship with John Falb and Sean Rayhall on board their AERO LMP3 Ligier, will look to make the final race of the year a big one.
“I’m really pleased our Michelin Le Mans Cup guys have teamed up to make one team for the Gulf 12 Hours,” said Richard Dean, Team Owner and Managing Director, United Autosports. “All three of them have had experience racing around the Yas Marina circuit and they will all take part in the test day on the Wednesday so I think they will be a fully prepared as they can be. They have all had a full season racing the Ligier JS P3 now as well, so fingers crossed for a good event for them.”
The 12-hour event will be split into two six hour sessions, with the first six hours beginning at 12:30 AM ET December 16th and the second half resuming at 8:45 AM ET.